My favorite bit about Puff the Magic Dragon was “as song by Peter, without Paul and Mary”:
Next you’ll tell me that Pete’s Dragon wasn’t about a mentally ill feral child who suffered crippling hallucinations.
What about “Puffin Books”, which I seem to recall was Penguin Books.
And Queen probably didn’t mean for this to happen, but the message is still embedded in the lyrics…
However, Lipton seems like a really cool and genuine guy, and I like that he takes a live and let live approach to the interpretation. If more artists respected their audience’s agency like that, the world would be a little better for it. While it doesn’t sound like he’s hurtin’ I hope Peter or his record company at least paid to use the poem, if not giving royalties to Lipton. Lyricists deserve to get paid for their work too.
All 182 seconds of the video? Wow, well, this could take a while. Let’s see: Lipton wrote the lyrics as a poem when he was 19 years old after being inspired by another poem about a dragon. Peter of Peter, Paul & Marry was among people he had dinner with that evening and Peter saved the poem which he later made into the hit song. Lipton is an accomplished inventor, filmmaker and seemingly humble dude who likes animals and has a really well decorated house.
My God! My childhood is in tatters now! So what is my beloved song about… nothing?
It’s about smoking weed.
Of course it is not about weed, the dragon is opium.
Well Jackie Paper was draggin’ on something magical!
So its not about the DC-3/C-47 transport planes converted into kickass gunships.
“The legendary “AC-47 gunship” affectionately known as Spooky, Puff, or Puff the Magic Dragon breathes its fire breath on the hapless enemy below.”
Thank you for saving me 170 seconds.
I’m here to serve.
Stop ruining my childhood assumptions. Next thing you’re going to tell me that there’s no lake of whiskey or cigarette trees in the Big Rock Candy Mountains.